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X Alan W

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About X Alan W

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  • Gender
  • Location
    Midi Pyrenees FRANCE
  • Interests
    Had to change user name used to be Alan W. ex owner of FMC Lily & small Woolwich Crater Ex hotel boat owner & operator

Previous Fields

  • Occupation
    Retired Areo Engineer
  1. Good point, although the most of my working was T&M ,Shroppie , S&W which were mostly single towpaths although working the BCN with double towpaths even in those days only the passage through the gauging stop locks was keep right Wolverhampton to Brum & keep left the other direction the side nearest to the passable narrows was considered the tow path side the usual was for info for visiting boatman working empty to advise where the deep water channel was, loaded correctly (a bit down by the head) was not a problem as the boat/s would follow the channel & as there were not the short length shallow draft boats as there are today (cutting the corners)it could more or less be known where the channel was. The other thing was the number of inexperienced folk afloat was a lot fewer so most boats you were likely to meet would have an idea as to what was required I am not knocking as things have changed a great deal.
  2. In the working days port/starboard or left/right I cant remember being used,tied up a lot of times the side to the bank was the "in" side this could change as it depended which side was to the bank,when the boat was under way steering instructions were always either "Hold In" or "Hold Out." "In" was towards the tow path "Out"was away This was more confusing to beginners as the tow path changed sides it seemed more used in the Northern waterways
  3. Yes they would be used if available ( & free) in fact most any thing,just that when we went to the shop/s if we bought a few items we would ask if they had a bag to put the things in, even as late as the mid 60's there were shops that wouldn't serve you if they knew you were a boater, bit difficult to argue due to the dress code, so you had your regular shopping places if the shop was close to the cut & if there was a lock close at hand you could get your supplies with the boat/s in the lock with possibly a single half drawn up/down hill paddle & return to the lock in time for it to be full/empty.Going up hill if the motor was in forward gear you sometimes had to hurry as the boat/pair would push the gate/s open & be on it's merry way along the next pound with crew scrabbling to get from butty to motor. There used to be a shop between the main road & Wardle lock on the Middlewich branch that was just aboui spot on for a lock filling time that gave you time enough to go/ shop/& return as the engine 'ole' doors were passing the top gate, had to be single motor working for this.
  4. The double walled brown paper sacks that grocers shops took deliveries in bulk to decant in to smaller amounts were very useful, cut down each side & opened out to double their length depending on the bags they were either more or less the correct width or almost & were very useful for prolonged wet weather or a section of muddy tow path multiple layers of news paper also were used if it could be obtained for free, certain canalside property's the owners used to bundle up old news print & pass it on Back in the day eye was kept out for anything that could be used/altered/adapted & to a perform a non designed use, the over riding thing being was it free I think today it would be easier to adopt this as now days it's a much more a dispose of /throw away society than it was back then.
  5. The cabins on our pair in working times was lino that had been removed from the Talbot pub in Mk Drayton when it was refurbished, there was enough that had very little wear having been under furniture etc It was light & a darker gray, covered in the table cupboard area with a rag rug A thing Iv'e noticed on some ex working boats the range is in effect the wrong way around the oven being on the right as you look at the range rather than being on the left I remember when I first started boating an old boatman said " Yome want the oven ont" the foot board side of your range or the fire ont' the wrong un's happen catch your'e foot board a fire"
  6. Are you going to chisel out & scarf in a thin piece of wood or a goodly amount of pitch & a metal tingle ?
  7. I wondered that,as said in earlier posts most steerers/crew have/had refined working through locks to suit their way of doing it. If during my working days I had that many hands at my beck & call I'd have thought Christmas & Birthday had come all at once, during our working period 58/69 i think we only had a third hand to help on half dozen or so occasions rest of the time we were just a total crew of 2 during our Hoteling days there was more often than not only 2 crew for boat working with on off help with gate closing from the passengers.
  8. I think this was a radio programe based on the LP record of the canal history that had the same contributors with some music songs by IIRC David Blagrove + canal sounds, Bolinder engine & paddle gear opening/closing I have a copy of the record but at this moment I am not sure which of several boxes it might be in to look up the credits I think it was released mid 60's?.
  9. A working boat with a deck board & part or complete cratch would not have a problem with unbaffled gate paddles water on the fore deck would hit the board & run off the sides
  10. They are not felling all the Midi plain trees they have found a treatment for the whatever the problem is & are treating the ones they can, & felling & replanting the ones that are to far gone
  11. When was the no stove/fire rule brought in I cannot ever remember going through in my carrying days with the cabin range not lit There would have been some "argy bargy" if they had wanted us to put the range out, especially if there was any thing on the range top or in the oven cooking.
  12. Our last trip to Llangollen during our hotel boating was 1971 summer season I'm pretty sure the gate paddles were still in place up to that trip no problems in the bottom Huelston lock but on that trip had to flush & "Tirfor" to get back onto the Shroppie
  13. Sorry with statements like that, I feel I can no longer post any thing to this forum that would be of use/helpful to this site. Best of luck, . Bye.
  14. It is some what obvious from your posts that you are set in your ways ( Fair do's ) you carry on doing things the way you do but to call people who do something differently "mod" an item to work better /last longer ( a fact that has been proved over the years) silly is not a positive way of getting your point across I know & accept that a fender is a consumable but a way to lengthen the time between renewals must be in my book positive not silly
  15. It was done for at least 2 reasons #1 the tyre stopped the knotted rope fender getting caught up on poorly maintained lock structures protruding bolts bits of bent metal plate & before you say don't let the boat touch the cill/ top gate it's some times in fact most times not possible with a 70ft boat in a lock only designed to take a max dimension 70 ft boat. #2 Do you like to spend money when not necessary? If putting a piece of tyre that is not fit for it's proper task around a rope fender will extend the coir fenders lifespan I'm all for it. If your "hubbie & yourself are in work that pays well (good for you to enjoy your hobby & replace a fender that wears out quickly, your call ) when it was your job that didn't pay very well & in cases where you had to pay for replacements making kit last as long as possible would not be classed as silly. I didn't do any pleasure/leisure boating, my boating on the canal 1958/72 was spent load carrying or Hotel boating both of which meant I had to make a living at it As an example the last load I carried for BW was a 12/14 hr day 5 day round trip which payed £23 I had to buy my own engine lubricating oil around £1 10 shillings? a replacement fender at around 1963 cost between £7 to £10 dependent on if it was made from used or new rope. So extending it's length of life was a must. A fender question from me why have fenders dangling down the side when under way when the boat has 2 or more full length welded guard irons Each to his/her own